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Council Has Failed Me, I Was Beaten And Stabbed Outside My House And Council Has Refused To Give Me Another Accommodation

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A man named Michael Fung, aged 45 and residing in Croydon, has repeatedly requested to be relocated to a different home by the Croydon Council. This request stems from his experiences of being stabbed and assaulted multiple times outside his current residence. Michael Fung has expressed feeling like a prisoner in his own home and believes that the council has neglected his situation.

In 2015, Michael was attacked in his home by an acquaintance of his ex-partner, resulting in four stab wounds to his chest, neck, leg, and back. In May 2019, he was assaulted by a neighbor who also used homophobic slurs against him after he answered the door. Michael did not report this assault to the Metropolitan Police out of fear of potential repercussions.

In August 2019, Michael’s clinical psychologist wrote to the Croydon Council, urging them to relocate Michael from the borough due to the detrimental impact living there had on his post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). This request appears to have been ignored. In December 2020, the psychologist wrote to the council once more, confirming that Michael was struggling with PTSD and bipolar affective disorder.

The psychologist’s letter stated that individuals with PTSD are triggered by environmental factors associated with their traumas. As both of Michael’s traumas had occurred in Croydon, he experienced daily triggers in that environment. The psychologist recommended that relocating Michael to a new flat in a different borough would significantly aid his recovery by reducing these triggers.

In March 2021, Michael’s psychologist, with the assistance of a case worker from the mental health charity MIND, again requested his relocation from Croydon. Michael also submitted a housing transfer application at this time. However, this transfer request seemed to be dormant for 17 months.

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In August 2022, Michael’s case worker from Hestia, a domestic abuse support service, followed up on the housing transfer application but received no response. The case worker then wrote to the Local Government & Social Care Ombudsman to file a stage one complaint.

In late August, Michael spoke with the Croydon housing team over the phone, and they reportedly acknowledged their mistakes and suggested that Michael should be relocated. In September 2022, the council apologized for the delay, citing COVID-19 as a contributing factor. They acknowledged the detrimental effect of Croydon on Michael’s PTSD and his desire to move elsewhere.

Michael was referred to Safer London, a reciprocal housing scheme for people impacted by violence in difficult housing situations. However, before his transfer could take place, he was assaulted by his neighbor once again in November 2022.

After this assault, Michael contacted Croydon Council, expressing his fear for his safety and his deteriorating mental health. He claimed to have received no response. Michael found it increasingly difficult to communicate with anyone from the council, as links on their website were outdated or not functioning.

Although he had been accepted into the new housing scheme, Michael needed Croydon Council to release him from his current tenancy. In February, a meeting was held where the council indicated that more evidence would be required before the housing transfer could proceed. Michael requested participation in the panel that would decide his fate but was denied.

In February, Michael was informed that he couldn’t be transferred to Pan-London due to incorrect information presented at the panel. Michael disputed the panel’s claim that his ex-partner was abroad, stating that this was untrue. He also felt that his mental health was not adequately considered by the panel.

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Croydon Council acknowledged inaccuracies in the information presented at the panel and admitted mistakes in presenting information. Michael claimed that he was never interviewed or assessed by the Family Justice Centre or a council domestic violence representative, even though the panel was told otherwise.

Throughout this process, Michael repeatedly informed the council of his suicidal thoughts. He lost faith in the council due to their poor communication, feeling that as a male victim of domestic abuse, he was disadvantaged.

Upon the council’s decision to deny his transfer to Pan-London, Michael received communication from South Mauldsley Mental Health Trust, stating that his specialist treatment would be paused until he was transferred out of the borough.

In February 2023, Michael submitted a formal complaint to Croydon Council. He has since written to the council through his GP several times. In March 2023, his doctor emphasized that his specialist treatment had been halted due to his residential circumstances. She noted that he was living in constant fear and had resorted to self-harm and thoughts of suicide.

In May, Croydon Council informed Michael that his complaint would proceed from the council’s stage 1 complaint procedure to stage 2. They issued an apology for the excessive delay and lack of active progression in his case.

As of now, Michael remains in a highly distressing home situation, terrified to leave his home and fearing retaliation from his neighbor and ex-partner. He believes that the council is waiting for further incidents to occur, and he feels that his life is at risk.

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The case is currently under investigation by the Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman. Croydon Council has stated that they cannot comment further on the matter due to the ongoing investigation.

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Birminghamgist Staff is a News Reporter, making waves in the UK with insightful and Engaging reporting.

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